Now that The Mist has officially rolled into town, Christian Torpe's adaptation of Stephen King's novella improved this week with an even creepier second instalment that brought the scares full force.
Anyone left misty-eyed for the movie had a wake up call in Episode 2, 'Withdrawal', which proved that this weekly TV format is the perfect way to explore the impact of the mist on the town of Bridgton. From the violent tussle in the mall to that unnerving cliffhanger ending, 'Withdrawal' perfectly encapsulated what makes the show so relevant today.
We may only be one small step closer to figuring out where the mist came from, but there's still plenty to unpack in the second episode of #TheMist, including some Easter Eggs and wider references that even diehard fans might have missed. Join us once again then as we lift the fog from your eyes and explore some of these in more detail.
1. The Waiting Game
Understandably, the threat hidden in the mist in the TV show is less dangerous than in previous iterations of the story. If giant tentacled monsters appeared in the very first episode, there wouldn't be any residents left in Bridgton by the time that the third or fourth episode rolled around. In 'Withdrawal', there were a number of instances where characters survived within the mist longer than we've ever seen before, most notably towards the end when Mia Lambert encountered an evil presence who taunted her (more on that later). Rather than rip our characters apart at the first opportunity, the evil hidden within this version of the mist is playing the waiting game, affecting the residents in ways not seen before.
2. How Real-World Events Impact The Mist
Frank Darabont's movie adaptation of The Mist notably contained a number of parallels with the aftermath of 9/11 in America. In particular, The Guardian noted how the extreme duress that characters like Mrs Carmody were placed under generated a form of paranoia that paralleled real life experiences following this terrorist attack. It's probably no coincidence then that explicit reference was made to 9/11 in this week's episode of The Mist too. In fact, the radios issued by Homeland Security after the events of 9/11 play a pivotal role in the plot, and Islamophobia also raises its ugly head when a Muslim shoe store owner is implicitly accused of suspicious activity.
3. Mother Nature Fights Back
This may seem like it's not particularly noteworthy at first, but it's rather intriguing that a forest mural is featured prominently in the mall that many of the characters are trapped in. On the upper level, this large piece of artwork is on full display, hinting that it's only a matter of time before the danger from outside finds its way in. This threat has also been hinted at by Nathalie Raven, who talks of nature seeking revenge against the residents of Bridgton.
"Few things are more beautiful than destruction."
Speaking of 'safe' locations, it also appears as though the church setting will oppress the townsfolk much like the religious zeal of Mrs Carmody did in the movie adaptation of The Mist.
4. The Arrowhead Project Takes Aim
After the pilot hinted that The Arrowhead Project could be responsible for creating the mist, this week's episode made these connections clearer in the form of some mysterious townsfolk who seemed to know more than they were letting on. From the letters 'arro...' written in blood, to the shock suicides discovered in the final scene, all signs point to Arrowhead. It certainly seems that we'll learn more about The Arrowhead Project on this show than we ever did in either the movie adaptation or Stephen King's original novella.
5. There's Something In The Mist, But Is It Real?
As previously mentioned, Mia Lambert encounters the show's first sentient being hiding in the mist, but this isn't your run of the mill monster. As we theorized before The Mist first aired, the people lurking outside are actually dead. What's worse, they seem to personally know the residents of Bridgton.
"She called you her baby doll. I saw her too..."
What remains unclear is whether these apparitions are really the spirits of lost loved ones, hallucinations created by the mist to torture people, or something else entirely. Stephen King's most terrifying villain of all, Pennywise the Dancing Clown, is a shapeshifter. Could the creatures in the mist possess similar abilities?
Other notes worth mentioning this week:
- The drone tech helps establish the show as a more modern version of the text.
- Silent Hill vibes continue to permeate Torpe's show, particularly when we see a police car driving through the mist.
- The final song that played into the credits is called 'Riverside,' and was performed by a singer called Agnes Obel.
How will the survivors trapped in the mall deal with those dead bodies? What kind of f**kery will beset those hiding out in the church? And will we ever see a giant tentacled monster slam against the rather fragile windows of the mall? Tune into Spike TV each Thursday to uncover the secrets of The Mist and check back here weekly to find out what you missed!
What was your favorite scene from the second episode of The Mist? Let us know your thoughts in the comments section below!